They warned me Toronto can get cold, and after four months of winter living I finally experienced it. This past weekend the temperature dropped and I was having none of it. So Friday evening I picked up enough supplies to get me to Monday, then proceeded to stay in blankets and pjs all weekend long.
It was bliss, but I also wanted to be intentional with the time I was gifting myself. I didn't want to burrito in bed for two days straight. Instead, the cold snap provided me space to be mindful, while expressing my creativity doing so. I wasn't in the mood to meditate for hours or go through a vinyasa, two very typical mindful practices. Instead, over the space of 54 hours, I painted, texturized, glued and drew two pieces of mixed media art I'm actually really proud of.
While exploring new artistic mediums, I was able to slow down and focus on the moment rather than get caught up in new, exciting ideas or upcoming deadlines at the office. I let go of the need for perfection in both the artworks I created and the space around me. In previous painting attempts, I was always hyper aware of keeping clean - almost to an obsessive degree. For the first time I allowed paint to get all over my hands and legs, the handles of my brushes, and to be honest my sink looks like something out of a horror movie. This process of letting go of control helped immensely, and I think it also played a part in improving my art. In letting go of control, I found beauty in the mess.
I also played with techniques I had never touched before, never been taught before. Exploring that unknown was scary. It didn't always go exactly as planned, but I found ways of making it work. And now? Now I can't wait to find new inspiration for the next project.
I am so grateful to have practiced mindfulness in an untraditional way. I was able to let go of fears, stresses, worries and heartaches more than I ever have in a yoga class. It's an added bonus that this mindful practice resulted in two lovely pieces of art too!